Campus Times Archives

No matter how it is described, the UR field hockey team’s season this fall can only be seen as a monumental success.

“We made history,” senior forward Shelby Hall said.

After several early season losses, the team, led by head coach Wendy Andreatta, never looked back on their way to the NCAA tournament quarterfinals.

“We took this season game by game, focusing on each opponent as we met them,” senior defender Sarah Dixon said. “I think that is why we were able to have such [success].”

Receiving the program’s first ever bid into the NCAA tournament, the ’Jackets began tournament play on Wednesday, Nov. 7 against Rowan University at Fauver Stadium.


Goals from freshman forward Michelle Relin and sophomore midfielder Megan Keil proved to be plenty of offense for junior goalkeeper Madison Wagner, who stepped up with a number of saves in the game’s final moments.

Dixon explained that the team’s assistant coach, Ashley Smeltzer posted emails, tweets and texts from friends and fans in the locker room before the game.

“These quotes reminded us that we have a whole community rooting for us to succeed and that we should revel in the experience and have fun,” Dixon said.

Following their opening round win, UR traveled to Salisbury, Md., on Nov. 10 to take on five-time Division III field hockey national champions the Salisbury University Seagulls, making their 28th appearance in the NCAA tournament. The Sweet 16 match-up only proved to be true to its namesake for the ’Jackets, who pulled off one of their biggest upsets in school history, upending the hosts 3-2.

Although Salisbury quickly took the momentum with an early goal, the ’Jackets battled throughout the first half, ending the period tied at two after goals from Keil and junior midfielder Katie Flaschner, the team captain. In the second half, despite a significant shot advantage for the hosts, it was UR’s leading scorer, Relin, who knocked in the only goal, giving the Yellowjackets the victory and a berth in the Elite Eight.

Only 24 hours after their dramatic upset, UR faced off against the tournament’s second seed, Montclair State University. The Red Hawks proved to be the stronger team on the day, taking the game 2-0 and thus ending the Yellowjackets’ improbable run. The loss was emotional for all, most notably for the team’s seniors.

“As a senior, I have seen this program improve for four years,” Dixon, reflecting on her time at UR, said. “When we beat Skidmore [on Oct. 5], I didn’t think it could get any better than that. But it did … not only have we set high expectations for future success, we have [also] set a high bar for future hard work.”

Hall echoed her sentiments.

“As a senior, I have seen this program transform right before my eyes,” she said. “In the four years I have been a part of UR field hockey, we have gone from a decent team to one of the top teams in the country. I love this team and will miss it dearly.”

Shapiro is a member of the class of 2016.

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